An overview of the most important European networks. 

Networking on a European level can serve many purposes. Some networks focus on facilitating partnerships or touring, artistic and capacity building opportunities. Other networks discuss ecological, technological, legal, civic, artistic and other hot topics. Some do both. Their publications, events or even newsletters can be useful and inspirational for both organisations and individuals, even without directly participating.  

Below you can find a list of networks, platforms and projects active at the European level. It can serve as a guide to find the right match for your organisation or activity. It does not extensively explain all their concrete projects and activities. Be sure to check out their websites.  

Although most work with a membership (+ fee!) system to gain access to the full network benefits, almost all also publish free resources such as research, magazines, newsletters, updates on activities or reports on meetings. Some networks even offer direct productional or financial assistance through training, grants, residencies and so on. 

This list attempts to be concise but not comprehensive. If you feel that your organisation is missing or misrepresented, please contact info@cultuurloket.be. Our thanks go to On The Move and Pearle* for the first composition of the list.  

Performing Arts

IETM - International network for contemporary performing arts 

IETM is a network of over 500 performing arts organisations and individual members working in the contemporary performing arts worldwide: theatre, dance, circus, interdisciplinary live art forms, new media. 

European Theatre Convention 

The European Theatre Convention (ETC) is a network of European public theatres founded in 1988 to promote contemporary drama theatre, to support the mobility of artists and to develop artistic exchange throughout Europe and internationally.  

UTR - Union des Théâtres de l'Europe 

The Union des Théâtres de l’Europe (UTE) is an alliance of European theatres. Regarded as one of the most influential theatre associations in Europe, the Union des Théâtres de l’Europe is also deeply rooted in the history of European theatre 

Perspectiv -Association of historic theatres in Europe 

In order to secure these treasures for future generations, PERSPECTIV - Association of Historic Theatres in Europe was inaugurated in October 2003. Members of the Association are historic theatres built between 1500 and about 1900. 

Circostrada 

Since 2003, Circostrada Network has been working to develop and structure the fields of circus and street arts in Europe and beyond. With more than 100 members from over 30 countries, it helps building a sustainable future for these sectors by empowering cultural players through the production of resources and actions of observation and research, professional exchanges, advocacy, capacity-building and information. 

CARAVAN Network - European Youth and Social Circus Network 

The international non-profit association CARAVAN was officially founded in October 2008 with six European youth and social circus organisations. Ten years later, Caravan gathers thirty members. Together, they share the common objective to promote circus practices in youth education and to encourage its development, through concrete actions such as youth exchanges and training for trainers’ programmes. The association is also committed to promoting collaboration and exchange in the field of youth and social circus. 

CIRCUS NEXT 

The aim of CIRCUS NEXT is to discover (through open calls), accompany and support the emergence of a new generation of circus artists in Europe. 

ECA - European Circus Association 

The European Circus Association (ECA) was established to promote circus arts and culture, thereby protecting this important part of our shared cultural heritage. ECA believes that circus is universal and an ever changing form of arts which offers a broad variety of expression.  

FEDEC - European federation of professional circus schools 

"FEDEC is a European and international network of more than 60 members located in more than 20 countries in Europe and beyond. Founded in 1998 at the instigation of the first vocational circus arts schools, FEDEC is committed to supporting the development and evolution of training, teaching and creation in the field of circus arts." 

RESEO - European Network for Opera and Dance Education 

RESEO is a network for arts education and creative learning with a specific focus on opera, music and dance. Founded in 1996, RESEO brings together organisations and artists from Europe and beyond to promote innovation and equal access to creativity, exchange ideas, and collaborate on shared initiatives, making us a true catalyst for development in the field.  

IN SITU  

IN SITU is the European platform for artistic creation in public space. Since 2003, it has supported more than 200 artists working outside conventional venues and contributing to the transformation of our territories. IN SITU is an ecosystem connecting a new generation of artists with audiences, programmers, and key-players in the economic, political and social realties around Europe.  

Fresh Arts Coalition Europe (FACE)  

FACE is an international network of arts organisations that supports contemporary cross-disciplinary art forms and facilitates international collaboration. It covers fresh and ground-breaking practices such as live art, immersive or participatory projects, site-specific arts, contemporary circus, and physical and visual theatre.  

PEARLE*

Created in 1991, Pearle*-Live Europe Europe is the ‘Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe’, the European sector federation of music and performing arts organisations. Pearle* represents through its members more than 10,000 managers of theatres, concert venues, theatre production companies, orchestras, operas, ballet and dance companies, festivals, promoters and other professional organisations in the performing arts in Europe.  

European Festivals Association 

The European Festivals Association (EFA) unites distinguished music, dance, theatre and multidisciplinary arts festivals from Europe and beyond since 1952. Today, the European Festivals Association (EFA) connects about 100 festivals and festival associations in 40 countries. EFA members are the core element that makes the Association an open, influential, international place for any festival that wants to be part of a bigger festival community. 

European Dancehouse Network 

EDN is a network for trust and cooperation between European dancehouses sharing a common vision regarding the development of dance art across borders. 

Aerowaves 

Aerowaves is a hub for dance discovery in Europe. They identify the most promising new work by emerging dance artists and then promote it through cross border performances. Aaerowaves’ network of partners in 33 countries enables these younger choreographers to bring brand new dance to brand new audiences.  

Life Long Burning 

Through its various activities, LLB strengthens transnational co-operations, fosters the mobility of artists and their works, contributes to career development, cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue and promotes knowledge transfer, audience outreach and the public display of dance. Life Long Burning, Towards a Sustainable Eco-System for Contemporary Dance in Europe – will further develop the first phrase of this project from Autumn 2018.  

Be SpectACTive! 

Be SpectACTive! is a European project based on audience development, involving some of the most innovative European organisations working on active spectatorship in contemporary performing arts. Its members are European festivals, theatres, universities and a research centers. 

FIA - International Federation of Actors 

The International Federation of Actors (FIA) is a global federation of performers’ trade unions, guilds and professional associations. FIA’s main purpose is to voice the professional interests of actors (in film, television, radio, digital media, theatre and live performance), broadcast professionals, dancers, singers, variety and circus artists and others.  

ASSITEJ - International Association of theatre for children and young people 

ASSITEJ unites theatres, organisations and individuals throughout the world who make theatre for children and young people. ASSITEJ brings people together so that they can share knowledge and practice within the field of theatre for children and young people in order to deepen understandings, develop practice, create new opportunities and strengthen the global sector. 

UNIMA - Union Internationale des Marionnettes 

Founded in Prague in 1929, Union Internationale de la Marionnette (UNIMA) is a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO) and an official partner of UNESCO (consultation). It gathers people who come from all around the world that contribute to the development of the puppetry art. 

Music

European Music Council 

The European Music Council, a regional group of the International Music Council (IMC), is the umbrella organisation for musical life in Europe. It is a platform for National Music Councils and organisations involved in various fields of music from many European countries. EMC members’ list is a good introduction to European key music organisations. EMC also conceives and co-develops workshops and training sessions.  

European Jazz Network 

Europe Jazz Network (EJN) is a non-profit Europe-wide association of producers, presenters and supporting organisations who specialise in creative music, contemporary jazz and improvised music created from a distinctly European perspective. The membership in April 2018 includes 133 organisations (festivals, clubs and concert venues, independent promoters, national organisations) in 35 countries. 

REMA - European Early Music Network 

REMA is a representative network for Early Music in Europe. 
Its main aim is to act as a network for its members, encouraging the exchange of knowledge, information and co-operations in the early music field. 

Europa Cantat 

Europa Cantat is a network of organisations, choirs and individuals in the field of collective singing in Europe. Through its membership, they directly represent more than 2,5 million singers, conductors, composers and managers in over 40 European countries, and reach out to more than 37 million people in continental Europe active in the field of collective singing. 

Opera Europa 

Opera Europa is the leading service organisation for professional opera companies and opera festivals throughout Europe. 

EuroStrings - European Guitar Festival Collaborative  

EuroStrings is the first European platform in the field of classical guitar founded by Zagreb Guitar Festival, gathering 17 classical guitar festivals that organize international guitar competitions and have a professional structure that enables further education and professional development of emerging guitar players. EuroStrings proposes different support programmes and scholarships.  

ECHO - European Concert Hall organisation 

The European Concert Hall organisation constitutes a platform for open exchange and for joint thinking on the opportunities, developments and shared challenges central to the lives of concert halls in the 21st century.  

ECSA – European Composer and Songwriter Alliance 

ECSA is a professional alliance formed by over 50 associations of composers and songwriters from all over Europe. The main objective of the alliance is to defend and promote the rights of authors of music at the national, European and international level by any legal means.  

European Conference of Promoters of New Music (ECPNM) 

The ECPNM is a union of organisations concerned with the promotion of contemporary music, especially music composed after 1950. Among its 30 members are famous festivals of contemporary music as well as small local concert organizers and new music ensembles. Its aim is to improve the international cooperation and the coordination of new music events in Europe. 

Jeunesses Musicales Internationales 

JMI is a global network of NGOs that provides opportunities for young people and children to develop through music across all boundaries. 

EFNYO - European Federation of National Youth Orchestras 

Since 1994 the finest pre-professional youth orchestras of Europe have been working closely together and formed an association known as the European Federation of National Youth Orchestras (EFNYO).  

With its 38 member organisations to date, EFNYO provides a platform for the exchange of expertise in music training, music performance, audience engagement, transnational mobility and intercultural dialogue between the leading national and international youth orchestras of Europe.  

Live DMA 

Live DMA is a European non-governmental network working to support and to promote the conditions of the live music sector.  Through time, Live DMA has grown in terms of size and impact. Today, the network is composed of 18 members situated in 14 countries. The members are regional and national live music associations that represent more than 2500 music venues and festivals located all over Europe. 

Liveurope  

Liveurope is an initiative supporting concert venues in their efforts to promote up-and-coming European artists. The platform works as a quality label awarded to live music venues committing to European diversity. The objective of Liveurope is to boost the programming of young European acts across the continent and help them reach new audiences.  

European Talent Exchange Programme (ETEP) 

The European Talent Exchange Programme (ETEP) was introduced in 2003 to make the ‘exchange’ of European artists across Europe possible on a greater scale than ever before. An initiative of ESNS, ETEP facilitates the bookings of European acts on festivals outside their home countries and generates extensive media exposure for these artists in cooperation with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), export offices and local media. This way, ETEP aims to give a boost to the international careers of European artists. 

EXCITE 

EXCITE is a multi-faceted, collaborative project between nine partner organisations based across Europe. The project leverages a dynamic mechanism to expedite the development of young artists and music businesses. EXCITE works with young musical talent that has already proven itself in its home country and is ready for foreign markets. The program is worked out to offer international experiences, networking opportunities and career development. 

EMCY - European Union of Music Competitions for Youth 

EMCY is the European Union of Music Competitions for Youth: a network of national and international music competitions for young people across Europe. 

PEARLE* 

Created in 1991, Pearle*-Live Europe Europe is the ‘Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe’, the European sector federation of music and performing arts organisations. Pearle* represents through its members more than 10,000 managers of theatres, concert venues, theatre production companies, orchestras, operas, ballet and dance companies, festivals, promoters and other professional organisations in the performing arts in Europe.  

European Festivals Association 

The European Festivals Association (EFA) unites distinguished music, dance, theatre and multidisciplinary arts festivals from Europe and beyond since 1952. Today, the European Festivals Association (EFA) connects about 100 festivals and festival associations in 40 countries. EFA members are the core element that makes the Association an open, influential, international place for any festival that wants to be part of a bigger festival community. 

Yourope - The European Festival Organisation 

Yourope was founded in 1998, and has evolved into the most important Association of European Festivals. Besides discussing trade topics and sharing best practices with its 90 festivals and associated members, Yourope has founded dedicated groups dealing with health & safety (YES Group), green operations (GO Group) and marketing & communication (EMAC Group). 

INES - Innovation network of European showcases 

The INNOVATION NETWORK OF EUROPEAN SHOWCASES, or INES, is a European cooperation project initiated by eight international showcase festivals and gigmit, the European digital platform for artist booking.  

AEAA - European Association of Artists Managers 

The Association Européenne des Agents Artistiques / European Association of Artist Managers (AEAA) was founded in December 1947 by a group of artist managers, concert agents and impresarios from five European countries in Paris. Today the AEAA counts over 70 members from 16 countries and represents over 4000 artists. The Association holds an annual General Assembly for its members, often combined with round tables presenting outstanding guests and speakers.  

AEC - Association Europeenne des Conservatoires, Académies de Musique et Musikhochschulen 

The Association Européenne des Conservatoires, Académies de Musique et Musikhochschulen (AEC) is a European cultural and educational network with around 300 member institutions for professional music training in 57 countries. 

EMU - European Music School Union 

The European Music School Union (EMU) is the European umbrella organisation of national music school associations in Europe. 

AER Europe - Association of European radios 

The Association of European Radios (AER) is a Europe-wide trade body representing the interests of over 4,500 private/commercial radio stations across the EU28 and in Switzerland. 

Sound, audiovisual & media art

CEPI - European audiovisual production 

The European Coordination of Independent Producers (CEPI) was founded in 1990 to organise and represent the interests of independent cinema and television producers in Europe. Today, the Coordination represents approximately 8000 independent production companies in Europe.  

Europa Distribution 

Europa Distribution is the association of independent film distributors. Since 2006, Europa Distribution has been creating new bridges for its members to share knowledge and mutualise experience, in particular to enhance the circulation of information and ideas and to improve the curation, promotion and distribution of independent films. 

UNIC - International Union of Cinemas 

UNIC is an international trade association representing cinema operators and their national associations across 37 European territories. UNIC promotes the cultural, social and economic benefits of a vibrant cinema-going culture in Europe and provides a strong and influential voice for European cinema operators on issues of shared interest. 

EBU - European Broadcasting Union 

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) is the world’s leading alliance of public service media (PSM).  

We are Europe 

We are Europe is the association of 8 major European events joining forces to promote, create and produce innovative cultural practices, defined by creative diversity and exchanges. Their common project aims to develop a prospective vision of electronic culture, technology and entrepreneurship, while contributing to new social and political developments through an interdisciplinary approach.  

SHAPE 

SHAPE is a platform for innovative music and audiovisual art from Europe. It consists of festivals and art centres and aims to support, promote and exchange innovative and aspiring musicians and interdisciplinary artists with an interest in sound. SHAPE attempts to present a variety of idiosyncratic music and sonic art from all over Europe, and provide audiences and professionals with insightful lectures, talks and workshops by experts in various fields related to sound and performance. 

EMAP EMARE 

EMAP EMARE wants to create closer bonds between European media organisations and enable artists to collaborate on projects.  

ISFE - Europe's video game industry 

The Interactive Software Federation of Europe (ISFE) was established in 1998 to represent the interests of the sector towards the EU and international institutions.  

Visual Arts / Design / Architecture

BJCEM - Biennale des jeunes créateurs de l’Europe et de la Méditerranée 

BJCEM is an international network founded in Sarajevo on July 2001.  The aim of the association is to create opportunities for the young creators of training, mobility, exchange, mutual understanding, intercultural dialogue and collaboration. The Association supports their creativity processes and put them in contact with local and international realities in order to help them to grow personally and professionally. 

Magic Carpets  

Magic Carpets is a platform uniting 13 European partners and intended for travelling emerging artists to work in socially engaged and responsible art field (visual art, public art, community art, exhibitions, performances, documentary theatre, online art, etc) to research and to implement new productions together with local artists and local communities 

Parallel – European Photo Based Platform 

PARALLEL brings together European cultural organisations, emerging artists and curators to promote a new quality standard for contemporary photography. Members include museums, galleries, cultural centres, festivals, art schools and publishers, that will participate in selecting and hosting emerging artists and curators, organising exhibitions and promoting artistic networking. 

Distributed Design Market Platform 

The Distributed Design Market Platform aims to foster the development and recognition of emerging European maker and design culture by supporting makers, their mobility and circulation of their work, providing them with international opportunities and highlighting the most outstanding talent.  

Arts Director Club of Europe 

ADCE was created in 1990 by a group of professional design and advertising associations from around Europe. Today it is still owned and managed by its members, and its mission remains the same: to foster and reward excellence and to showcase European creativity as a whole.  

The Bureau of European Design Associations 

BEDA today boasts 46 members from 28 member states in Europe. Members can be design promotion centers and other publicly funded organisations that promote design nationally or regionally as well as professional and trade associations for designers from across Europe. 

IN SITU  

IN SITU is the European platform for artistic creation in public space. Since 2003, it has supported more than 200 artists working outside conventional venues and contributing to the transformation of our territories. IN SITU is an ecosystem connecting a new generation of artists with audiences, programmers, and key-players in the economic, political and social realties around Europe.  

Future Architecture Platform 

Future Architecture is the first pan-European platform of architecture museums, festivals and producers, bringing ideas on the future of cities and architecture closer to the wider public. The Future Architecture platform introduces and celebrates innovation, experimentation and the ideas of a generation that will design the architecture and build Europe’s cities in the years to come.  

Literature / Cultural journalism / Writing

Federation of European Publishers 

FEP is an independent, non-commercial umbrella association of book publishers associations in the European Union. FEP represents 29 national associations of book publishers of the European Union and of the European Economic Area.  

EBLIDA 

The European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations is an independent umbrella association of library, information, documentation and archive associations and institutions in Europe. 

European Writers’ Council 

EWC is the federation of 44 national organisations of professional writers and literary translators in 34 countries including the EU, as well as Belarus, Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey and Montenegro.  

EWC’s member associations represent altogether around 160,000 individual authors in the book and text-sector in all genres and writing altogether in 40 languages. 

CEATL - European Council of Associations of Literary Translators 

CEATL is an international non-profit association, officially created in 1993 as a platform where literary translators’ associations from different European countries could exchange views and information, and join forces to improve status and working conditions of literary translators. Set up by 10 founder members, CEATL now has 35 member associations from 29 countries across Europe, representing some 10,000 individual authors. 

PEN International 

Founded to unite writers irrespective of their culture, language or political opinion, PEN International is the world's leading association of writers, working to promote literature and defend freedom of expression around the world. 

EUROZINE 

Eurozine is a network of European cultural journals, linking up more than 90 partner journals and associated magazines and institutions from nearly all European countries. Eurozine is also an online magazine which publishes outstanding articles from its partner journals with additional translations into one of the major European languages. 

FEST- Federation of European Storytelling 

The Federation of European Storytelling is a European network of organisations and associations active in the field of storytelling. The FEST network aims to empower the world of storytelling in Europe through sharing, learning and relationship building.  

AICT - International association of Theatre Critics 

The IATC draws together more than two thousand theatre critics. The purpose of the IATC is to bring together theatre critics in order to promote international cooperation. Its principal aims are to foster theatre criticism as a discipline and to contribute to the development of its methodological bases; to protect the ethical and professional interests of theatre critics and to promote the common rights of all its members; and to contribute to reciprocal awareness and understanding between cultures by encouraging international meetings and exchanges in the field of theatre in general. 

Residencies

RES ARTIS 

RES ARTIS is the worldwide network of artist residencies. It is an association of over 650 centers, organisations, and individuals in over 70 countries. Each of its members is dedicated to offering artists, curators, and all manner of creative people the essential time and place away from the pressures and habits of every-day life, an experience framed within a unique geographic and cultural context. 

Cultural centres

Trans Europe Halles  

TEH’s mission is to strengthen the sustainable development of non-governmental cultural centres and encourage new initiatives by connecting, supporting and promoting them. They facilitate international cooperation, provide opportunities for learning and sharing, and promote the practice, impact and value of arts and culture. 

European Network of Cultural Centres – ENCC 

ENCC currently represents over 3,000 cultural centres in at least 22 countries with more than 15,000 employees, thousands of volunteers and 40 million visitors per year. ENCC organises a large variety of events contributing to the professional development of its members, the structuring of the sector, the development of cooperation and innovation at a European level. 

Cultural Heritage

Europa Nostra 

Europa Nostra was founded on 29 November 1963 in Paris. For over 50 years, they have celebrated, protected and lobbied for cultural heritage. Europa Nostra is today recognised as the most representative heritage organisation in Europe with members from over 40 countries. 

ACCR - Association of Cultural Encounter Centres 

The ACCR gathers almost 40 members from all over the world. The Heritage Sites for Culture connect heritage, having lost its initial use, with ambitious intellectual and artistic projects ensuring the reconstruction and rehabilitation of heritage. They are therefore working on two major objectives of cultural development: reusing heritage and promoting local sustainable development. 

Association of European Royal Residences (ARRE) 

Since 1995, the institutions in charge of the most prestigious Palace Museums in Europe have come together to form the Network of European Royal Residences, registered as an association since 2001. The network enables its members to work together and share their knowledge and experience in the preservation and development of the rich cultural heritage in their care, to the benefit of the millions of visitors they receive each year. 

NEMO – Network of European Museum Organisations 

NEMO is formed by national museum organisations or similar bodies as well as individual museums within the member states of the Council of Europe. Among its activities, NEMO organises webinars and training sessions open to museum professionals.  

Art Nouveau Network 

In 1999, following an idea mooted by the Brussels Region Department of Historic Sites and Monuments, a large group of institutions from various European cities with a rich Art Nouveau heritage - from Helsinki to Barcelona, and from Glasgow to Ljubljana - decided to come together to form an initial European co-operation network. 

European Historic Houses 

The European Historic Houses (EHH) gathers 24 national associations of owners-managers of private historic houses and gardens in 22 European countries. 

E-FAITH - European association of associations of Industrial and Technical heritage 

E-FAITH, the European Federation of Associations of Industrial and Technical Heritage is a platform promoting contacts and co-operation between volunteers and non profit volunteer associations in Europe. 

FRH Europe - Future for Religious Heritage 

Founded in 2008, FRH is a non-profit, non-religious, organisation dedicated to building a Pan European Network of heritage connections devoted to providing European citizens with opportunities to participate in, and appreciate, all forms of heritage and culture throughout Europe. 

Michael Culture Association 

Michael Culture Association (Aisbl - Belgium) is a trans sectorial European network Devoted to European digital cultural heritage valorisation. Michael Culture develops tools and services for cultural institutions and the general public. Linked to other major European cultural heritage networks and projects such as Europeana, Europe's Digital Library, Michael Culture Association supports European and national cultural policies. 

Perspectiv -Association of historic theatres in Europe 

In order to secure these treasures for future generations, PERSPECTIV - Association of Historic Theatres in Europe was inaugurated in October 2003. Members of the Association are historic theatres built between 1500 and about 1900. 

Cultural management & research

ENCATC 

Established in 1992, ENCATC is a network of more than 100 member institutions and professionals in over 40 countries active in education, training and research within the broad field of cultural management and policy. ENCATC members have an impact on the education of thousands of cultural managers worldwide. 

Ericarts - European Institute for comparative cultural research 

The European Association of Cultural Researchers (ERICarts Network) is committed, since 1993, to pioneering theoretical and applied cultural research as a recognized professional field and to promoting the exchange of scientific ideas and resources. 

Topic based (ecology, mobility, participation, …)

Imagine 2020 

Imagine 2020 (2.0) is a network of 10 EU based arts organisations, with a focus on raising awareness in the cultural field and in a broader civil society context around the issues of the socio-ecological crisis that we are currently facing. It funds artistic commissions, research and development and promotes the sharing of resources, ideas, knowledge and debate across the various topics under the umbrella of art and ecology. 

UCLG 

The Committee on culture of the world organization of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) is the global platform of cities, organizations and networks to learn, to cooperate and to launch policies and programmes on the role of culture in sustainable development. 

On the Move  

On the Move is the cultural mobility information network active in Europe and worldwide. It shares for free and on a regular manner on its website news, funding schemes and opportunities to facilitate the mobility of artists and cultural professionals.  

Amateo 

Amateo is the European Network for Active Participation in Cultural Activities. Its head office is registered in Ghent.  

PEN International 

Founded to unite writers irrespective of their culture, language or political opinion, PEN International is the world's leading association of writers, working to promote literature and defend freedom of expression around the world. 

Culture Action Europe 

Culture Action Europe (CAE) is the major European network of cultural organisations, artists, activists, academics & policy-makers. CAE is the first port of call for informed opinion and debate about arts and cultural policy in Europe. 

European Alliance for Culture and the Arts 

The Alliance is composed of European networks urging policy makers to re-think the European approach and include culture and the arts in the long-term strategic goals of the European project.